The Vermont Division of Emergency Management and Homeland Security (DEMHS) has asked for an expansion of a Preliminary Damage Assessment by the Federal Emergency Management Agency to include eight additional counties. The added counties are Addison, Caledonia, Essex, Grand Isle, Orange, Rutland, Washington, and Windsor. The assessment initially included Chittenden, Franklin, Lamoille, and Orleans counties. An initial review of damages suggests 12 Vermont counties could qualify for federal disaster assistance following response to and recovery from a severe winter storm that began on December 9th. The counties above could qualify for aid under a Public Assistance disaster declaration.A team from the Federal Emergency Management Agency began a Preliminary Damage Assessment with VT DEMHS and Vermont Electric Cooperative on December 17th. An initial review showed restoration costs exceeding $4-million that could make communities and utilities in northern and central Vermont eligible for federal assistance.Under the federal Stafford Act, publicly owned and municipal utilities can be eligible for 75% federal reimbursement of restoration costs should the state and counties meet federal thresholds. A Public Assistance disaster declaration would also assist towns in paying for repairs to public infrastructure and some response and recovery costs.To qualify for assistance Vermont must show at least $1-million in verified damage; individual counties must also meet a separate threshold of $3.56 per capita to be eligible for assistance. Should the thresholds be met, Gov. Peter Shumlin would forward a formal request to FEMA, which would then determine whether or not to recommend that President Barack Obama sign the declaration.Source: Vermont Division of Emergency Management 12.19.2014. Photos courtesy GMP
The Google Fiber Space at State Line and Westport Road. Go there. Put your name in the computer.Now that the agreements are signed, are you wondering what you can do to spur Google Fiber to build out its network to your area and bring its high speed Internet and television service to your house at long last?“But,” perhaps you are saying, “I’m just one person! What can I do to bend the will of a global corporate behemoth? I’m just going to stay on the coach and keep shoving ice cream at my face.”Wellsir, buck up! You may have the ability to draw the company’s attention after all, according to Prairie Village city administrator Quinn Bennion.During a report to the Prairie Village City Council on Monday, Bennion relayed a message from a Google representative about how the company is mapping its next build out moves.“They mentioned that as you hear from residents about wanting Google to come to their areas, encourage them to go to the Fiber Space and register,” Bennion said. “They won’t be registering for a Fiberhood, but Google still uses those address points to determine where the next Fiberhoods will go forward.”Which is to say: Want Google Fiber to come to your city faster? Take a trip to Westport Road and State Line and put your address in the computer.Do it. Do it. Is it done yet? Do it.
A 7,707 SF office building located at 7000 E. 1st Ave. in Old Town Scottsdale was recently sold for $2.15M. Price per square foot was calculated at $278.97.The entity, Laguna Holdings, LLC dba Bigfish Creative Group was the buyer of the property. The design and marketing agency will occupy the space when interior upgrades are completed by the first of the year.Comptrol Technologies was the seller of the property and included a short-term sale leaseback until the end of November. Bill Blake and Colton Trauter, Principals with Lee & Associates Arizona negotiated on behalf of the buyer. Barry Lammersen of Lammersen & Associates represented the seller. Tom Alteri, Senior Vice President with MidFirst Bank provided financing.There are more than 3,400 businesses with 43,000 employees located within one and-a-half miles of the property.The two-story building, built in 1974 and renovated in 2012 has high-end features such as double-pane windows, vessel sinks with waterfall faucets and seven new HVAC roof units.
RTVE:Un equipo de expertos afirma haber hallado que los monos babuinos son capaces de establecer analogías a pesar de no disponer de un lenguaje, de forma que pueden relacionar dos contextos diferentes pero simbólicamente parecidos, según ha informado el Centro Nacional de Investigación Científica francés (CNRS).Esta nueva teoría desmiente la hipótesis según la cual “solo los seres humanos o los grandes primates -a los que se haya enseñado previamente un lenguaje- son capaces de razonar de ese modo”.Los babuinos, pequeños monos originarios de África, serían capaces de establecer una relación entre una gata que alimenta a su cachorro y un pájaro que hace lo propio con sus crías, según los autores del estudio, en el que han colaborado el CNRS y la Universidad Franklin & Marshall de Estados Unidos.Read the whole story: RTVE
Nov 7, 2012US West Nile cases top 5,000, including 228 deathsOver the past week the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) received reports of 163 more West Nile virus (WNV) infections along with 5 more deaths, pushing the nation’s total this year to 5,054 cases and 228 deaths, according to an update today. The pace of new infections and deaths is up from the previous week’s, when 116 new cases and 4 new fatalities were reported. So far 2,559 of the WNV cases involved the neuroinvasive form of the disease. The CDC reiterated that this year’s WNV season is the worst since 2003. Nearly 80% of cases have been from 12 states, with Texas bearing the largest burden, reporting a third of all infections.Nov 7 CDC WNV case chartIn a related development, Maine officials recently reported the state’s first-ever WNV case, a patient from Cumberland County who started having symptoms on Oct 1, which included fever, encephalitis, and meningitis, according to an Oct 31 statement from the Maine Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS). The patient had not traveled during the exposure period, and officials consider the case to be locally acquired.Oct 31 MDHHS press releaseExperts say dengue is widespread and vastly underreported in IndiaDengue virus infections are widespread in India, and extreme underreporting of cases makes the problem worse, according to experts quoted in the New York Times yesterday. The government counts only lab-confirmed cases reported in public hospitals, which totaled 30,002 for this year through October, compared with 18,860 cases for all of 2011. Scott Halstead, MD, a tropical disease expert, estimated the true number of annual cases at 37 million, with 227,500 hospitalizations. Manish Kakkar, MD, MPH, a specialist at the Public Health Foundation of India, said India’s “massive underreporting of cases” has contributed to the disease’s spread. Other experts told the Times that India’s failure to build an adequate dengue surveillance system has hindered awareness of the illness’s vast extent, discouraged efforts to clean up its sources, and slowed the quest for a vaccine. A recent, as yet unpublished study found that dengue is about as prevalent in West Bengal as in Thailand, where almost everyone is infected in childhood, the story said. It noted that up to 80% of dengue infections cause only mild symptoms, but 20% are more serious and 1% are life-threatening. Four strains of dengue viruses exist, and a person who has a second infection with a different strain than the first may suffer a serious illness. “The great danger of having hundreds of millions of people in India with undiagnosed and unacknowledged primary infections is that a sudden shift in the circulating dengue strain could cause a widespread increase in life-threatening illnesses,” the story said.Nov 6 Times storyYellow fever outbreak in Sudan grows to 194 cases, 67 deathsSuspected cases of yellow fever in Sudan have reached 194, including 67 deaths, according to an update yesterday from the World Health Organization’s (WHO’s) eastern Mediterranean regional office. The outbreak has affected 17 localities in Central, South, West, and North Darfur states and now has a case-fatality fate of 34.5%, the office said. The outbreak, which began in late September, has expanded by 91 cases and 25 deaths since the WHO’s last update on Nov 2. About 83% of cases are from Central Darfur. WHO officials are working with Sudanese authorities to vaccinate people and to train more than 225 health workers on surveillance, case management, outbreak investigation, and infection prevention and control.Nov 6 WHO updateNov 2 WHO update
(Caribbean Media Corporation) ROSEAU, Dominica, Apr 8, CMC – A twin engine commercial aircraft crash landed at the Douglas Charles Airport here on Monday, but there were no immediate reports of injuries. Media reports said that the plane belongs to the Dominican Republic based Sky High Aviation Services that has schedule flights from Santo Domingo, Tórtola, Aruba, Curacao, St. Marteen, Bonaire, St. Kitts, Antigua, Cuba, Bahamas, Eustatius, Jamaica and Dominica. Video recordings showed several people walking away from the aircraft. Share this:PrintTwitterFacebookLinkedInLike this:Like Loading… Dominica, St. Lucia bracing for storm force winds Residents of Dominica, St. Lucia, Martinique and Guadeloupe were this morning advised to remain on the alert for tropical storm-force winds and heavy rains associated with the passage of a weather system through the region. The 8:00 a.m. weather report from the US National Hurricane Centre did not declare…September 28, 2016In “CDEMA”LIAT’s new routes for summer 2015 take effect this weekJOHN’S, Antigua– A number of new services and non-stop routes which have been added to the summer schedule of LIAT, The Caribbean Airline, will come into effect on July 15 and 16. From Antigua, customers will now enjoy a new daily service to San Juan each evening. This is in…July 13, 2015In “Antigua & Barbuda”Strong CARICOM support for hurricane ravaged DominicaThe Governments and people of Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Member States continue to actively support their sister country Dominica following Monday night’s devastating passage of Category 5 Hurricane Maria. “We’ve lost all that money can buy”, Prime Minister Roosevelt had disclosed after surveying the widespread damage to houses and infrastructure. A…September 24, 2017In “Antigua & Barbuda”Share this on WhatsApp Oct 16, 2020 Oct 15, 2020 CMO says Saint Lucia at critical stage of COVID-19 outbreak Oct 16, 2020 You may be interested in… Barbados releases new COVID-19 Travel Protocols Oct 16, 2020 CARPHA Partners with, PAHO to Ensure Caribbean States’… Six Eastern Caribbean countries deemed safe for travel – CDC
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Lord Justice Jackson has said large numbers of respondents have answered his call for evidence on the extension of fixed recoverable costs.The appeal court judge is set to report at the end of July on the potential for increasing the scope of the fixed costs regime.In a speech today, Jackson said he and his assessors are working through large numbers of responses – many of which support his existing costs budgeting rules.‘One strong message which comes over in many of the submissions and also at the seminars is that (despite all the criticisms in the past) costs management is now working much better,’ he said.‘It applies the new proportionality rule to the circumstances of each individual case. Many people are arguing that this does away with the need for fixed costs in the multi-track. The counter-argument is that for lower-value cases, a fixed costs regime is simpler and cheaper.’Adding fixed costs to existing costs management controls has been supported by defendants and liability insurers, who are also worried about the costs incurred before case management conferences.Jackson said initial analysis by judicial assistants indicates that ‘incurred’ costs represent about 31% of total costs on the claimants’ side and around 14% of total costs on the defendants’ side.Jackson also reported that a frequent response has been that one size does not fit all, adding there is ‘force’ in that point.He vowed to identify which types of case and which ‘levels’ of case will be suitable for fixed costs.‘Many people are arguing that the value of a claim should not be the sole determinant of whether it is suitable for fixed costs,’ he added.‘One must also look at the complexity of the case, the number of issues, the number of experts and so forth.’He floated the idea of a new ‘intermediate track’ to accommodate lower value multi-track cases which are subject to fixed costs. He asked what the procedural rules should be such a category.Jackson stressed he will put forward a package of proposals which will promote access to justice and control costs, as well as being fair and workable. The government has indicated that his proposals will then be the subject of a consultation.
A tribunal has struck off a veteran solicitor who could not explain where thousands of pounds of clients’ money had gone. Roland Cassam, a solicitor for 40 years and a principal at Cardiff-based conveyancing firm Temple Law, had received significant funds from clients which were intended to redeem mortgages.But the funds were never transferred and a Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal heard the solicitor and his firm were left with a six-figure sum unaccounted for.The tribunal said his motivation for misusing client money, and for failing to maintain proper accounts, was unclear, although Cassam had stated he had no intention permanently to deprive anyone of money.In a judgment published this week, the tribunal suggested this could have been a case where there was a loss of control and one hole in the client account was plugged with other money: at best he had ‘borrowed’ client money and used it inappropriately.The judgment added: ‘This was forbidden; client money was sacrosanct and should only be used for the client’s purposes. Whilst the general failure to maintain accounts may have been unplanned, the specific transfer and use of client money was clearly planned rather than spontaneous.’An investigation into the firm in February 2015 indicated the most recent bank account reconciliation offered was from August 2013. Practice rules require them to be carried out every five weeks.Both Cassam and his partner, Peter Rhidian Lewis, accepted their failure to keep the books of account properly written up.Crucially, investigators found two conveyancing files where money had come into the client account but appeared to have vanished.Towards the end of 2014, the firm received £127,000 in sale proceeds from one client and £21,165 in deposit monies from another. The total cash held in the bank for these matters, as at 31 December 2014, was just £784.Both Cassam and Lewis admitted to a series of accounting breaches, including failing to keep proper records. The pair had also been reprimanded in 2010 after five breaches of accounts rules.The tribunal heard that Lewis, the firm’s compliance officer, had been distracted by pursuing other business interests and effectively stopped fee earning in 2013. He was found to have failed to discharge his duties and was fined £3,000, with a £3,000 costs order.Cassam was found to have known he was acting dishonestly in transactions, knowing a mortgage had not been redeemed despite holding the funds for it. The tribunal said an honest solicitor would have provided a truthful account of the facts, but he had insisted to investigators the mortgage was redeemed, even when he knew that was not the case. He had stated his determination to restore the balance of any shortfall in the client account.As well as being struck off, Cassam was ordered to pay £15,575 in costs.
UK: The Department for Transport’s disqualification of non-compliant bids for the East Midlands, South Eastern and West Coast Partnership franchises was lawful, Mr Justice Stuart-Smith said when handing down judgment in the High Court on June 17.In April 2019 the then Secretary of State for Transport, Chris Grayling, disqualified Stagecoach, Virgin and Arriva from each of the competitions in which they were taking part.The bidders had refused to accept the government’s planned allocation of pensions liability risks under the new franchises, and had instead proposed other terms that allocated a greater risk to the government. This made their bids non-compliant with the requirements of the franchising process.The East Midlands franchise was subsequently awarded to Abellio and commenced in August 2019, while the West Coast Partnership franchise was awarded to First Trenitalia and commenced in December 2019. The South Eastern competition was cancelled in August 2019.Arriva, Stagecoach and Virgin brought proceedings contending that the Secretary of State’s decision had been unlawful.Arriva settled on confidential terms just before an expedited trial was held in January and February 2020.The High Court rejected all the challenges to the claimants’ disqualification and to the award of the franchises, finding that the terms of the competitions and how DfT had conducted them were fair and transparent. Rebidding or cancelling would have amounted to unfair treatment of the compliant bidders.DfT welcomed the court’s decision, insisting ‘our franchise process was fair, our conduct was transparent, and the disqualification at the heart of this case was proportionate’.Stagecoach Group said ‘we believe there were important issues which needed to be determined by the court to help secure the future of the country’s rail system. Our view remains that we were right not to accept the risks in these contracts. While we are disappointed at today’s ruling, we accept the decision and move on.’John Thomas, Director of Policy at the Rail Delivery Group, said the judgment ‘has been accepted by both parties’ and the industry ‘wants to work with government to ensure a reformed railway’ which ‘can harness the best of both the public and private sectors’. Meanwhile, RDG continues to work with the Pensions Regulator, DfT and the unions ‘with a view to agreeing a sustainable pensions framework for the train operator sections of the Railway Pensions Scheme.’,WebsitesWe are not responsible for the content of external sites2019 Rail Franchising Litigation